Recently visited the Long Shop Museum in Leiston, Suffolk which was part of the Garrett Engineering Works, famous for producing traction engines, agricultural machinery, cast-ironwork, trolleybuses, and dry cleaning equipment.
On the railway scene, Garretts went into partnership with Beyer Peacock to form Beyer Garrett and the Leiston factory produced stoker engines, bearings, valves, and various components for the Beyer Garrett articulated steam locos which were mainly popular in Southern Africa.
The museum not only covers the history of the company, but the history of the Garrett family from the company's founder - Richard Garrett, including his grand-daughter Elizabeth Garrett Anderson - England's first woman doctor, who founded the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital for Women (now absorbed by University College of London Hospital) and on my visit, there were 80 descendents of Richard Garrett present at the museum.
Although there are traction engines of various sizes from full size down to model engineering scales operating, my real 'star' was:
'Sirapite' This was the Garrett works loco built by Aveling & Porter in 1906 and operated between Garrett's factory and Leiston station 1929-1962, when it was sold to Sir Robert McAlpine for his collection, but ended up rusting and neglected in Kent when the Long Shop Museum tracked it down in 2003, returned to Leiston a year later and after total rebuilding, steamed again in October 2009.